Skip to content
Anton Marklund

The Omniscient

Social worker Ramona and her husband Peter receive an unexpected visit from a police officer. They are asked to accompany him to a lake in their village, without him giving them a proper reason or explanation. But Ramona already knows. As they get into the car she can visualise the young woman lying dead in a boat. She doesn’t know who she is. And neither does the police.

The local police are aided by an investigator from Stockholm who becomes friendly with Peter and who soon learns about Ramona’s unique gift of sensing glimpses of a person’s life, details they would rather have kept in the dark. Due to the lack of leads, he convinces Ramona to help the investigation. But to see who is responsible for the murder of the unidentified woman, she must reach deeper than she has ever done before. To simply know more than others is not enough. In order to understand whom they are dealing with she needs to know exactly what to look out for.

The Omniscient is the first book about Ramona Lindh – a powerful and eerie suspense novel about the circumstances and actions that make a person a victim or a perpetrator.

Anton

About the author

Marklund

Anton Marklund was born and raised in a village outside of Skellefteå, but has lived in Umeå for the past twenty-five years. He made his literary debut with critically acclaimed novel Djurvänner (Mercy) in 2011, which was followed by novella Stora Björn in 2016. The Omniscient is Marklund’s debut as a crime novelist and the first book about Ramona Lindh, the…

Read more

About the book

Sold to

Denmark: Modtryk, Germany: Btb/Random House, Norway: Bonnier Norsk

Social worker Ramona and her husband Peter receive an unexpected visit from a police officer. They are asked to accompany him to a lake in their village, without him giving them a proper reason or explanation. But Ramona already knows. As they get into the car she can visualise the young woman lying dead in a boat. She doesn’t know who she is. And neither does the police.

The local police are aided by an investigator from Stockholm who becomes friendly with Peter and who soon learns about Ramona’s unique gift of sensing glimpses of a person’s life, details they would rather have kept in the dark. Due to the lack of leads, he convinces Ramona to help the investigation. But to see who is responsible for the murder of the unidentified woman, she must reach deeper than she has ever done before. To simply know more than others is not enough. In order to understand whom they are dealing with she needs to know exactly what to look out for.

The Omniscient is the first book about Ramona Lindh – a powerful and eerie suspense novel about the circumstances and actions that make a person a victim or a perpetrator.

Reviews

This is Anton Marklund’s first crime novel and he expertly handles the suspense.

Crime fiction involves finding out people’s secrets. But what happens when you, like Ramona, can see them already from the start? Supernatural elements in fiction can be awkward: they often detract every trace of suspense. I remember (luckily only vaguely) one crime novel where the main character kept receiving practical messages from some kind of ghost as soon as she was missing leads. It became extremely boring after the first time. It is a difficult art to write suspense, even though many claim to master it. One of the most crucial components is to have exactly the right balance when it comes to the disclosures, ensuring that they are not too effortless and not too plodding. In The Omniscient, main protagonist Ramona has the ability to see a little bit more than the rest of us. She can’t control it and sometimes it doesn’t work at all. But from time to time, she senses the things that haunt people, what they are ashamed of, and sometimes also what has happened in their pasts. Social worker Ramona and her husband live a few miles outside of Skellefteå, and by their lake a young girl is found dead in a boat. What has happened to her? Someone believes that she is a vagrant, while someone else suspects trafficking. When the investigation appears to have come to a standstill, the police turn to Ramona and her remarkable gift in an act of desperation. And yes, this also means that her professional expertise as a social worker will be required. This is Anton Marklund’s first crime novel and he expertly handles the suspense. Encompassing everything except Ramona’s gift, it is a realistic crime plot, but so staggeringly beautifully portrayed that it becomes something more essential: a contemplative observation of human helplessness. Even the supernatural elements become comparatively realistic. Ramona’s ability is obviously called into question by everyone, until they are proven wrong. Then everyone becomes ill at ease instead. Because who wants to be associated with somebody who may happen to see one’s innermost secrets?

Dagens Nyheter
Author Anton Marklund has with The Omniscient achieved a Västerbotten noir that may very well be considered one of the best Swedish crime novels this year.

Author Anton Marklund has with The Omniscient achieved a Västerbotten noir that may very well be considered one of the best Swedish crime novels this year. With an unusual female lead character and with profound metaphysical reflections on good and evil, guilt, punishment, God’s potential existence and what it actually means to administer justice, it really stands out at the same time as it carries many familiar traits of the genre – social pathos for those who have ended up on the shady side of life, male violence and sexual frustration, a strong unyielding woman, a poetic language that interacts with nature’s wildness and the desolation of the abandoned villages. The subdued, reflective narrator, and the beautiful nature imagery, create a striking contrast to the grotesque crime. The ending offers the reader no peace, but perhaps that’s the intention.

Bibliotekstjänst
His portrayal of Västerbotten, the countryside and the two coastal towns, is not the novel’s main point. But it sets the tone. Solid and poised with a slight hint of melancholy

His portrayal of Västerbotten, the countryside and the two coastal towns, is not the novel’s main point. But it sets the tone. Solid and poised with a slight hint of melancholy /… / to involve supernatural powers in a Västerbotten murder case that otherwise appears to resemble authentic cases from real life, is not without risk. It can go too far. Become ridiculous. “The gift” may turn into a curse, killing off the sense of realism that the suspense ultimately relies on. Anton Marklund makes the impossible possible. He brings Ramona’s ability to a manageable level. Restrains himself, stops at something that can be described as Stephen King light. Sure, she possesses a superpower, it leads the police in the right direction, it ensures that the finale offers some unforeseen twists /… / But above all, the gift doesn’t infringe on the rest, the central part. The socio-political anatomy of the murder. Because it’s just as much through her job – the contacts she has with vulnerable families and outcasts – as through her gift, that Ramona finds her way in the emerging shadow realm where the local exists alongside the global. Add Marklund’s eye for relationships and ear for everyday thoughts, both at home and at work. No grand gestures or recitations. He knows that nuances and dwellings are better suited to the lower case.

Västerbottens-Kuriren

News All News

Read more her

" data-button_text="Ok" >